Ptarmigan Tracks

The Newsletter of Camp Denali,
North Face Lodge, and Parkside Guest House



Online Version 2016

Vol. XLI, Winter 2016

Some readers may recall traveling through the park when the Naturalist Guide paused the vehicle to share a friendly Hello with a familiar NPS Road Crew employee. Chuck Bale attained a rare milestone this summer: 45 seasons maintaining the Denali Park Road. Reflecting on his tenure, Chuck had this to say:
“The road is a community.”

Understated wisdom from one who would know. Indeed, one of the things we’re often reminded of, both in Alaska and at our lodges, is the profound value of community. Perhaps it has to do with the sparsity of humans in a state that boasts over a million acres for each day of the year, or the dependability of resourceful neighbors when the chips are down and it’s a long way to town.

What’s more, living and working here continually reminds us that it takes all kinds. As with many things, Camp Denali founder Ginny Wood said it first and best:

What you look like, whether you had money, whether your family was Boston Society or raised on a stump ranch – it didn’t matter. In Alaska you were accepted for what you were able to do and you were free to do many things.

As 2016 comes to a close, we are thankful for everyone near and far who enriched our community with a diversity of talents and camaraderie. We wish you the best in the New Year.

~Simon and Jenna Hamm



2016 Project Roundup

© Murray Cohen

Special Sightings

© Karen Willes

Special Emphasis Series

© Marc Lombardi

In Memoriam

© Bruce McAllister

Photo courtesy of Julie Collins

Planning for the Future

© Sharon Lindsay

Staff